Mon, Feb 23, 2009 - Page 5 News List

FEATURE : Residents of scorched Flowerdale plan a resurrection

BOOZER BECOMES BUNKER In Australian towns the pub is the social center, but in Flowerdale when the bush fires came it turned into the town’s survival center

AP , FLOWERDALE, AUSTRALIA

“They need to be where they are comfortable, where they are safe,” Gunter said. “I don’t think any of us would have thought this would happen so quickly, but it shows the community spirit behind all of this.”

Flowerdale resident Debbie Bourke stopped by the pub for the morning meeting and picked up some new pink pajamas for her four-year-old daughter, Shawnee. The family is living in a tent and the children stay warm at night in their sleeping bags. She said the tenacity of Flowerdale’s people gives her hope.

“You can’t knock Flowerdale. They won’t get us off our hill,” she said. “We’ll stay and we’ll rebuild, even if we have to do it one house at a time. It’ll all come back.”

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